Story Submitted by Leigh M. Clark
In the Fall of 2008, Leigh Clark lost her high profile job as a Director of Marketing for a New York-based Software Company. Suddenly she found herself with a lot of time to self reflect and a deep realization that she was lacking purpose outside her profession. In the years that followed she would return to work, but she now was acutely aware that she needed to find something that gave her fulfillment aside from her job alone.
One Holiday Season, in 2012, everything would change for her. She was overweight and underwhelmed and decided to embark on a personal mission of finding balance for her mind, body, and soul. She challenged herself to doing Yoga, Juicing and one act of kindness each day from Thanksgiving to Christmas. Her life was transformed and her purpose was discovered.
The euphoria she discovered from carrying out Random Acts of Kindness sparked an idea. She decided she would work to form a nonprofit to impact people across the country, and later across the world, through these kind acts. With very little funding, Clark began to sell artwork she had painted through local farmers markets, and social media. With every piece she sold, she would use the profits to fund a variety of good deeds for strangers.
Her acts of kindness ranged from paying off layaways at the holidays for strangers to gathering school supplies for foster children in need. She appointed fellow Kindness Ambassadors to help carry out programs across the country as well. Through that program, her organization would give out crucial supplies to those facing homelessness, help women and children who were victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, and even paint and donate murals to fellow nonprofits.
In the years that followed, her work would be featured on The Today Show and The Rachael Ray Show. Additionally, she formed an online community on Facebook called The Kindness Community which now has over 15,000 members worldwide. Additionally, the organization has recently launched The Kindness Mall which is a place to shop online where a portion of all proceeds go toward Random Acts of Kindness.
Leigh Clark has reminded all of us, that you can start a fire with a spark, and she is using her spark to illuminate the world with kindness. Check out www.kindleigh.org for more info or join the cause on social media.
She is currently doing a Spread Kindness mask fundraiser for charity at kindleigh.org/mask.